BEIJING (AP) – A strong earthquake struck a lightly populated, mountai-nous area of western China on Saturday, killing at least one person and causing minor damage to buildings, officials and state media said.
The US Geological Survey said the magnitude-5.9 quake had a depth of 14.6 kilometres. It struck in the late afternoon about 30 kilometres from the town of Kangding in Sichuan province. China’s seismological agency gave the magnitude as 6.3.
A woman in her 70s died after being struck by a falling window pane, the official Xinhua News Agency and state broadcaster CCTV said.
A duty officer at the Kangding county government, who gave his surname as Xia, said the quake lasted only a few seconds, and that there had been some reports of cracks in buildings and toppled walls.
The area is frequently struck by earthquakes, and Xia said newly constructed buildings in the town of Kangding must be able to withstand those of up to 8 in magnitude, although requirements are less strict in the surrounding rural area.